He's Not Worth It

“He’s not worth it.” That’s the lie Maggie’s been telling herself for months. That it wasn’t worth it to even try to get involved with a man like Harry Styles. He was a world traveler, a famous musician. And her? She was just his neighbor. A friend. “He’s not worth it.” She said it so many times to herself, but never once did she believe it.

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11. {Eleven - The Date}

Late March 2018

 

“So… I just wanted to run something past you,” Liam said once he got Harry on the phone that Saturday.

“What?” Harry asked impatiently. He was in a hurry to get out the door. He was already late getting to the studio.

“Well, uh…” Liam stammered, taking his sweet time spitting it out.

“Payno, seriously – I don’t have a lot of time,” Harry said, locking up his apartment door.

“Well, I uh… I kind of asked Maggie out on a date,” Liam told him.

“You what!?” Harry snapped, stopping in his tracks on the sidewalk.

“I…” Liam started, but stopped himself.

“What the fuck, Liam!?” Harry said incredulously.

“What? I mean, she said yes,” Liam told him.

“She said yes!?” Harry asked, running his free hand through his hair.

What the hell? He wasn’t good enough for her, but Liam was?

“Uh, we’re going out tonight,” Liam said hesitantly.

“So, what were you planning on ‘running by’ me?” Harry asked with unfaltering sarcasm.

“I don’t know. I just… I like her, Harry,” Liam said. Harry was struck speechless. Of course he liked her – she was perfect.

“Harry?” Liam asked.

“What?” Harry grumbled.

“Are you okay with this?” Liam asked carefully. No!

“If I said I wasn’t would you break off the date?” Harry shot at him.

“Uh, probably not,” Liam said quietly after a few silent seconds.

“Then what is the point of this whole bloody conversation?” Harry practically yelled into the receiver.

“I-I don’t know. I guess I just wanted to give you a heads up,” Liam stammered.

“You know we slept together, right?” Harry shot at him, trying everything to derail their date.

“Uh, no. I didn’t,” Liam said awkwardly.

“Well, we did,” Harry said, immediately feeling like a git for blurting it out like that.

“Okay…” Liam said quietly.

“So?” Harry asked.

“So, what?” Liam countered.

“Never mind,” Harry scoffed.

“Listen, Harry…” Liam began.

“Have fun. I’ve gotta go,” Harry said sarcastically and immediately hung up on him.

What a day ruiner. What a life ruiner. Fucking Payno.

Harry couldn’t concentrate at all in the studio. The producer he was working with was getting so fed up with him. Finally Harry just told him his heart wasn’t into it and he left to go home.

When Harry walked up the sidewalk to his flat, he noticed Maggie’s lights in her house were still on, which most likely meant she was still home. Maybe he could convince her to break off the date with Liam. She answered her door wearing a way-too-sexy-for-Liam-Payne tight black dress. Harry wanted to die knowing Liam was going to get to escort her around while she wore something that mouth-watering.

“Liam told me about your date,” Harry said immediately, getting straight to the point.

“We’re just friends,” Maggie countered right away.

“What? Like we’re just friends?” Harry shot back at her.

“We are just friends,” she said, avoiding his eyes.

“Look, Maggie… I don’t want to say the wrong thing here and have you angry with me again… but I don’t like this. I don’t like this one bit,” Harry told her. Her eyes met with his again, narrowing dangerously.

“I’m sorry, Harry. Liam and I have become friends and he asked me out to dinner,” she said and he could hear the attitude in her voice.

“What if I asked you not to go?” Harry asked her boldly.

“Harry, you can’t do that,” she said, shaking her head.

“That’s one of my best mates, Maggie!” Harry protested.

“If I didn’t know any better, I would think you were jealous right now,” she said as her eyes narrowed again.

“He’s my best mate,” he said again.

“Harry, I don’t know how I feel about him, but I can promise you nothing is going to happen between me and Liam tonight,” Maggie told him firmly.

She was assuring him nothing was going to go down with her and Liam, but Harry couldn’t accept the fact that she was going on a date with him at all. He was jealous. He was so fucking jealous.

“Then why go?” Harry asked.

“I’m not going to say it again, Harry. Please. I need to get ready. Liam is taking me out to dinner and he will bring me home. Nothing else will happen,” she explained.

“Fine,” Harry said, not liking it – but deciding that fighting with her was just going to make her get angry with him, which would hinder his own chances of ever getting a date with her.

“Yes, it will be fine,” she told him.

Harry couldn’t do anything but stare at her. He was hoping she could see his final plea in his eyes. But she couldn’t – story of his life.

“Goodnight, Harry,” Maggie said finally as she started closing her door on him.

He took a deep breath and let it out as she closed the door completely, leaving him standing on her front stoop alone.

 

Liam picked Maggie up on time and took her to a private restaurant where it was just the two of them – no paparazzi, thank god. Their conversation was light and flirty – but as much as she wanted to move on from Harry, she knew that doing so with his friend was out of the question. Liam was great and everything – he was the whole package even. Handsome and polite. He made it a point to listen contently to everything she said and he paid for dinner. Maggie was certain he would make a woman very happy someday, but it wasn’t going to be her.

“Liam, I have to tell you…” She started.

“What is it?” He asked as he took a sip from his water.

“Uh, Harry and I… we’ve… we, uh…” She stammered, trying to find the words. Why was it so hard to say?

“We’ve slept together,” she said finally, her gaze falling down to her hands as if it were some dirty secret. Liam was silent, causing her to look up at him. He just nodded his head lightly and she couldn’t gage his reaction.

“It was only one time and I told him we couldn’t do it again,” she said, feeling as if she was confessing to a boyfriend whom she cheated on.

“I know,” Liam said quietly.

“You know? Harry told you?” She choked out, feeling incredibly hurt. What a dick.

“He had a few choice words for me when he found out I asked you out,” Liam explained.

“Oh,” she said, her cheeks blushing rapidly.

“What made you bring up Harry?” Liam asked.

“I just… I didn’t want you to… I don’t know. We’re friends. I thought you should know I’ve had relations with your best friend,” she told him and he nodded.

Thankfully, she brought up her and Harry’s one night stand at the end of dinner, because it got a little awkward after that. Though it was probably mostly on her part, because she started feeling and acting awkward. She couldn’t get Harry out of her head. He was like a parasite infesting every part of her brain.

Liam drove Maggie back to her house and she immediately noticed Harry’s face in his front window. Oh, good Lord. Thankfully, he didn’t sit there watching them as Liam walked her to her door.

“Liam, I had a lot of fun,” Maggie told him truthfully. He was fun – he just wasn’t who she truly wanted.

“I did too, Maggie. You’re great to be around. I’m glad we’re friends,” Liam said, smiling at her.

“Me too,” she told him.

Seconds later, he moved in to kiss her delicately on the lips. It didn’t linger – it wasn’t passionate. It was just more of a goodnight kiss.

“I thought nothing was going to happen, Maggie,” Harry scowled from behind Liam.

“Harry!” Maggie yelped, pulling away from Liam.

“This is ridiculous. Thanks a lot, Liam!” Harry snapped and stormed back into his house.

“What the hell?” Maggie scoffed, feeling annoyed because of Harry’s childish behavior.

“I was wondering if his feelings for you would finally come out if I took you on a date,” Liam said, smirking slyly.

“What?” Maggie asked, feeling incredibly stunned.

“Don’t tell me you haven’t noticed,” Liam said, giving her a questioning look.

“Noticed what?” She asked, feeling confused.

“That Harry is in love with you,” Liam replied casually, as if his words weren’t as powerful as they really were.

Maggie was stunned, shocked, baffled. Her brain was no longer producing intelligent thoughts. It was just an array of ‘umm’, ‘uhh’, ‘huh’. Liam chuckled as he watched her try to grasp onto the notion.

“From the look on your face, I can see that it’s mutual,” he smiled amusingly at her.

“What? No,” she said quickly and Liam rolled his eyes.

“You two,” he sighed, shaking his head and smiling jovially. Maggie stood there frozen. Was she that obvious?

“It was fun, Maggie. I would ask for another date, but I think Harry would proper murder me if I do. So I’ll just back off,” Liam told her and his words barely registered. Maggie was still reeling from Liam’s revelation. Harry was in love with her?

“Goodnight,” Liam said and kissed her on the cheek.

“’Night,” she breathed quietly as Liam made his way to Harry’s front door.

What just happened? She honestly wasn’t sure. She went into her house in a daze, walking up the stairs to her bedroom. She changed out of her dress and into a pair of shorts and a tank top, still thinking about Harry – trying to relive every single moment she spent with him over the past few months. She had no clue.

 

Harry stormed up the staircase in his flat, ready to punch something. He really wanted to punch Liam’s face in, but he was too busy lip-locking with his girl. Harry paced back and forth across his bedroom floor trying to get the anger to settle, but it wasn’t working. He just kept replaying that stupid kiss in his mind and it was driving him mad.

Moments later, he heard his front door open.

“Harry?” Liam called out.

Harry stormed down the hallway toward the foyer as Liam started ascending the stairs to find him.

“Fuck you!” Harry yelled at him and Liam just laughed.

“I will punch you in the face, Payno,” Harry said, clenching his fists.

“Calm down, mate,” Liam said with a smile on his face.

“No! Fuck you, you fucking wanker,” Harry snapped as he began pacing his living room.

“If I knew how you felt about her…” Liam began to say.

“Then what?” Harry yelled, glaring at him.

“Then I wouldn’t have asked her out,” Liam told him.

“You should have gotten the idea from our chat today,” Harry countered.

“How long have you fancied her, Harry?” Liam asked, but Harry fell silent.

“What? Are you going to deny it?” Liam questioned.

“A while, alright?” Harry grumbled.

“How long is a while?” Liam asked.

“Since I met her,” Harry told him reluctantly.

“Why the hell don’t you tell her how you feel then?” Liam asked incredulously. Harry glared at him for a moment.

“Seriously… what do you have to lose? Next time it’s going to be some other bloke taking her out – and then what? Are you going to just sit at home and cry?” Liam asked.

“Shut it,” Harry shot at him with a narrowed glare.

“She’s not going to wait around forever for you to get your head out of your arse,” Liam told him.

“Wait around for me?” Harry asked curiously.

“I’ve got to go, mate,” Liam said, ignoring his question as he headed for the stairs.

“What do you mean?” Harry asked.

“Think about it, Harry. There’s a reason she hasn’t dated,” Liam said cryptically.

“What the hell does that mean?” Harry asked.

“If you can’t figure it out, then you’re pretty thick, mate,” Liam chuckled as he reached for the door handle.

“See ya later,” Liam said and went out the door.

Harry stood there baffled for a good few minutes, trying to figure out what Liam’s cryptic words meant.

 

Maggie’s mind was still reeling as she found herself walking out her front door toward Harry’s house. There really was only one way to find out the truth.

She heard the courtyard gate shut before Liam’s Mercedes started up and he drove out of the parking lot. She knocked quietly on Harry’s door and waited for him to answer. Her heart raced with the thought of seeing him. What was she even going to say? How was she going to handle this? She contemplated running back to her house before he had a chance to catch her there, but it was too late. Harry opened the door finding her standing there in front of him.

“Hi…” He said, eyeing her warily. Maggie cleared her throat and started to speak without really having a plan set in her mind of what she would say.

“We’re friends. Right, Harry?” She asked, stepping toward him into his entryway. He moved back as she moved in deeper.

“Yeah, we’re friends, Maggie,” Harry said, giving her a concerned look.

“Are we really? We’re friends?” She asked again, staring at him as she shut his door behind her.

“Yes, Maggie. What is going on?” Harry asked, furrowing his brows in question.

“I just want to get down to the bottom of this,” she said as she eyed him.

“Of what? Have you gone mad, Maggie?” Harry questioned, giving her a funny look.

“That we’re friends…” She said, starting to sound a little crazy.

“Yes! Jesus, Maggie! We’re friends!” Harry grumbled.

“So that’s why you didn’t want me to go on a date with Liam? Cause we’re friends?” She questioned, narrowing her eyes at him.

“Yes!” He bellowed.

“Nothing else?” She questioned again.

“Nothing else,” he said, sounding exasperated. But she wanted to get to the bottom of it once and for all. She didn’t want to play games anymore.

“Nothing at all?” She asked.

“No!” He yelped and chuckled, even though she sort of knew she was freaking him out a little.

“So there’s nothing else between us?” She asked, quirking a brow at him.

“Maggie…” Harry sighed, his expression softening.

“No, Harry. I want to know… is there something else?” She asked.

“I don’t know, is there?” He replied, looking at her expectantly.

Maggie stared at him, her eyes narrowing again. She was trying to read him, but he wasn’t giving her anything. She knew she must have looked like a lunatic, but it didn’t matter to her in the moment. Maggie saw Hemmy out of the corner of her eye standing at the top of the steps and she quickly turned her full attention to him for a split second. And that’s all it took. By the time her eyes skated back to Harry, he was crashing his lips against hers – taking her breath away quite literally.

And her brain was back to mush.

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